Despite Sabrina Ionescu’s historic night, freedom lost the key game

Despite Sabrina Ionescu’s historic night, freedom lost the key game

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Phoenix – Diamond DeShields scored 25 points, Shay Peddie added 20, and the Phoenix Mercury beat the New York Liberty 76-62 on Saturday night, despite missing guards Diana Taurasi and Skylar Diggins-Smith.

Sabrina Ionescu had an assist just 29 seconds into the game, making her at least 200 assists and 200 rebounds in WNBA history, as well as 500 points in the same season as Crystal Dangerfield’s 3-pointer.

DeShields and Peddie picked up the slack for Diggins-Smith (a non-Covid illness) and Taurasi, who missed a second straight game with an ankle injury.

Phoenix (14-19) kept the hope of the playoffs, a half game ahead of Independence for the final playoff spot. The Mercury have three games remaining, all at home.

Liberty (13-19) has four games left to close out the season, with two at Dallas and then a home-and-home against Atlanta.

Sabrina Ionescu
Sabrina Ionescu
NBAE via Getty Images

Sophie Cunningham had 18 points and eight rebounds for the Mercury.

Ionescu finished with 22 points, five rebounds and five assists for Liberty. Betnijah Laney returned from meniscus surgery, played her first game since May 17, scoring seven points in just 21 minutes.

The Liberties lost Natasha Howard to an ankle injury in the second half.

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